My sweet tooth is a serious problem. It is the little devil on my shoulder convincing me that I deserve to have sugar, and that it will make me feel better. By the time Halloween is splashed all over the stores, my will power is useless when confronted with Candy Corn. What is a girl to do when she finds herself standing in front of her open freezer, spoon in hand, eating directly out of the ice cream carton? What is the remedy to grabbing a handful of Jelly Beans every time she passes the pantry?
I seriously needed something to re-set my healthy angel who obviously fell off my opposing shoulder. Sweet Husband always says, if you really want to do something, you need to tell yourself you CAN. If you know you can, then you do! With my mind in the right place, I went for 3 days of Juicing. Nothing like a forced starvation to change your bad habits, right?
I don’t own a juicer, So I cheated a little and bought all my juices. I found cold pressed juices in the produce section of my grocery store and tried Columbia Gorge, Evolution, Suja, Forager, Naked Pressed and Puritea. I followed a pretty simple plan:
8:00 am Green Juice
10:00 am Green Juice with Pineapple or Apple
12:00 pm Green Juice
3:00 pm Spicy Lemon
5:00 pm Root Juice (beet or carrot blend)
7:00 pm Almond Milk
When choosing the juices, I chose those very low in sugar. That leads to really unappealing tasting juices a lot of the time… especially when I realized that I do not like celery in my juices – and most of the green juices have celery. Ugh. I also found out that beet juice does taste a bit like dirt. And carrot juice must be an acquired taste. I am not destined to be a frequent juicer.
I kept a log while I was juicing. I thought I would give the juices better ratings as I grew hungry, but I didn’t. Some clear favorites were established: Evolution’s Smooth Greens and Kale and Suja Uber Greens. Forager’s Greens and Pineapple was a favorite on my first day, so I had it again on the third day. My entry reads, “I’m hungry and tired, so I’m going to have my very good Greens and Pineapple Juice early…OH, UGH, Is this the same juice? This is awful”
I did find that the juices with high sugars were too sweet, and because the root juices were high sugar, I did not like them. The lemon waters are boring, and I can easily make these rather than spend $3-5 on a bottle. I had a lot of hot tea during the 3 day cleanse. Green tea in the morning, herbal blends in the evening and at night. I must have had 4-6 mugs of tea each day. I was hungry, and the hot water curbed my appetite a bit. My hunger did not go away.
Here are some of my comments from my journal:
“Maybe I’m hungry because I had a bowl of ice cream last night to kick off my juice cleanse”
“Good thing I’m stuck on this Ferry and I can’t run to the refrigerator”
“After a day of Juice, Almond Milk feels as substantial as a steak”
“I’m so hungry I’m not sure I will be able to sleep”
“It is a good thing I was out of the house from noon to 4 pm, or I would have fallen off the juice wagon”
Day 1 500 Cal 64g Sugar 14.5g Protein
Day 2 555 Cal 92g Sugar 11.5g Protein
Day 3 875 Cal 150g Sugar 25g Protein
After the Cleanse
On the first day after I finished, I was thirsty! I drank a lot of water. I Guess my body just got used to having a lot of liquids going through it and needed more water to flush solid food. I ate as healthy and balanced as possible. And I think my stomach is a tad bit smaller, as small portions were satisfying. I didn’t eat candy. Giving up that habit is why I just went through hunger pangs and headaches. I also avoided alcohol, and foods that would upset my stomach, foods that are fried, rich, creamy, sweet, and overly processed.
October is not the time to juice if you live in the northern lattitudes. Your body gets cold when you a) drink cold liquids, b) cut your calories, c) cut back on exercise and d) cut back on caffeine. All things you do when you are on a Juice Cleanse. I was so cold I missed my recent bout of hot flashes, (which, by the way, were much better when I was on my cleanse… I’m not sure what ingredient or lack of ingredient is responsible).
I suggest you give up Caffeine about a week before you go on your juice cleanse. I love coffee – I love the ritual of making coffee in the morning, the aroma, the taste and the hot mug you get to hold in the morning. The price I pay is that I have a little caffeine addiction. Even though I was able to have as much green tea as I could stomach, it was not enough to stave off the caffeine headache. So not only was I starving and cold, I had a headache most of the time.
A juice cleanse is like camping in cold weather. I don’t like it. It takes a lot of prep, it is uncomfortable, and yet at the end there is a sense of accomplishment and I was glad I went through the pain. I am writing this about a week after I finished the cleanse, and, if I had written this yesterday morning I could say that I am not reaching for sweets and candy. However, last night was Halloween… I had candy. I had a lot of candy. Plus popcorn and pumpkin seeds (my own fresh roasted pumpkin seeds from my Jack-0-Lantern). It did help me be a more mindful eater, but it is not a cure for my bad habits.